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Nintendo 3DS: Futuristic Handheld, Retro Battery

Included Applications and Software

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The 3DS includes a healthy amount of non-gaming software. The Mii Maker is very similar to the one found on the Nintendo Wii, so you can create a Mii in your own image, or go crazy make an awesome Admiral Ackbar avatar. The biggest addition here is the ability to create Mii’s from photos taken with the front-facing 3DS camera. Beyond that it’s pretty self-explanatory: Make a Mii and have it represent in you in certain 3DS games.  Your Mii profile is a little more fleshed out this time, and has more connections to the outside world than its Wii counterpart. When it comes to StreetPass, Nintendo’s take on NFC, you can allow your Mii to be copied to other 3DS devices you happen to come across. You can also make custom QR codes for your Mii to make sharing with friends that much easier.

Your Mii is also what people will see when they add you to their friend’s list. Your friend card displays a Mii of your choice, your friend code, a 16-character message (something like “Hello World!”), your favorite game, and online status (you can keep this private if you prefer). Nintendo is still using Friend Codes instead of say, and email address or username, but this time around you have ONE code, tied to your 3DS console, instead of a new code for every game you play.

The 3DS also includes a camera and an audio recorder. The camera app lets you take 2D photos of yourself with the front-facing camera, or 2D/3D photos using the dual sensors on the back. After taking a photo, you can use the Graffiti tool to make it a little more festive. The audio recording app lets record small sound bites (ten seconds each), which you can edit to go slower or faster, change the pitch, or add effects like a parakeet. This is a silly, but fun, add on that exists simply to make use of the microphone. Other software, like the Settings menu, Download Play, and the Activity Log, is standard Nintendo fare.

One quick note: Some software, like the 3DS Web Browser and the eShop, hasn’t been activated yet. Nintendo has told us both will be made available via firmware updates at some point in the future.

Devin Connors currently works as a community manager for Rocket League at Psyonix Studios, but he was previously a senior editor at Tom's Guide, writing about gaming, phones, and pretty much every other tech category. His work has also appeared in publications including Shacknews, GameZone, The Escapist, Machinima, and more.